November 5, 2009
By Anonymous

It was a windy, dark day in mid-December. At the time, the economy was at its lowest point since the Great-Depression. Prices of living were high, and it was tough to support a family. My mother and father both had decent jobs. The family wasn’t doing bad, considering there was practically a depression out in the rest of the country.

I can almost remember it like it was yesterday. The phone was ringing, I picked it up to a lady, sounding panicked, asking if she could speak to my father. I didn’t recognize the voice but I quickly handed him the phone, but stuck around, waiting to see where this conversation was heading. When they started talking I could still hear her, talking loudly on the other end. She had said she lost her job, and was losing her home. Not even knowing the woman, I felt bad. “What if that was me?” I thought to myself. It slowly dawned on me that the woman on the phone was one of my dad’s co-workers. His company was doing layoffs and I guess she was one that got cut.

At that very moment my dad had to make a decision that would affect the entire family. There was a minute of silence, then my dad started talking again. “Well…well maybe you can take my job?” he said

It took the lady a couple of seconds for it to sink in, but when it finally did I heard cries of joy, following screams coming from the phone. “I can’t take your job though,” she said softly.

“Please,” my dad said. “My wife has a job, we’ll get by.” The lady seemed really hesitant. As much as she wanted to take the job, she couldn’t take it from somebody else.

A couple of days later we got a call from the same lady. She said that she was truly sorry, but she wanted to take the job offer my dad gave her, it was her only choice. My dad said it was perfectly fine.

At first, I thought that my dad giving the job to the near-homeless lady was very nice and something that our family needed to do. As the months dragged on, with only my mom’s paycheck, I began to become very mad that my dad would even think of doing this to the family.
The lady who got the job had a daughter, around my age. One day she came over with her mother to get some paperwork. We began talking and somehow the subject of a cell phone came up. “Well, do you have one? Can I have your number?” I had asked her.

I noticed a sad look on her face and she quickly replied. “No, my family can’t afford one of those.” This made me feel really sad for her. Here I was complaining about not having money for every single thing that I want, and she hardly has anything. “I’m so selfish,” I thought to myself over and over for the next week. I couldn’t get my mind off of anything but the fact that I was so self-centered, to be so upset over money. I realized that I needed to make a change. Instead of being so caught up in money, cell phones, and technology, I began volunteering at a local soup kitchen. It makes me feel sick that I could have ever been the way I was before.
It was a huge risk for my dad to take for our family, but we were willing to sacrifice our wealth for a family who needed it more.

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